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Baseball Tops NC State, 11-10

April 17, 1998

CLEMSON, SC — Kurt Bultmann singled home Brian Ellis with the winning run with one out in the bottom of the 12th inning, leading seventh ranked Clemson to an 11-10 victory over 24th ranked NC State in ACC baseball action Friday night at Clemson.

Clemson improved to 36-7 overall, 9-4 in the ACC, while NC State fell to 29-14 overall, 9-5 in the ACC. The series, which features two of the top seven winningest college baseball programs in the nation in the 1990s, continues Saturday at 7:00 PM and Sunday at 2:00 PM. Clemson improved to 11-0 at night and 3-0 vs. ranked teams this season.

Justin Singleton was Clemson’s top offensive player with a career high five RBIs on two hits. Bultmann had two hits and reached base safely five times. Brian Ellis had one hit and four walks for the Tigers, who had just two hits over the last five innings of the contest.

NC State was led by Brad Piercy, who hada double and a triple and scored three runs. Keith Walsh and Jimmy Slaughter had the only two home runs of the game.

Scott Clackum got the win in relief for Clemson and raised his record to 6-0. He pitched the final 3 1/3 innings and allowed just one hit. Whitney Hughes was the loser in relief and fell to 2-1.

NC State took a 2-0 lead in the top of the second. Brad Piercy led off the frame with a double. He moved to third on a wild pitch and scored on Adrean Acevedo’s single. Acevedo then moved to third on a pair of wild pitches and scored on an infield ground out by Craig Lee.

Clemson, who was swept in the regular season at Raleigh last year by the Wolfpack, retaliated with five runs in the bottom of the inning. It was the 18th time this year Clemson scored at least five runs in an inning. With one out, Kurt Bultmann and Henri Stanley reached on consecutive singles. Peter Nystrom then loaded the bases when he reached on an error by NC State third baseman Brian Ward.

Justin Singleton then had the first of his hits that keyed five-run Clemson innings. His single drove in two runs to tie the game. Doug Roper then singled in Nystrom to give Clemson a 3-2 lead. Singleton later scored on an infield grounder by Patrick Boyd and Roper scored on an error by State starting pitcher Rodney Ormond.

Clemson’s three-run lead lasted just two innings. State scored two in the third and three in the fourth. State used its power in scoring the three runs in the fourth. Matt Postell singled and scored ahead of Jimmy Slaughter, who slugged a homer off Clemson starter Ryan Mottl. It was the first homer of the year for Slaughter, the number-nine hitter in the State order. Keith Walsh then followed with a homer to right field. It was just the third homer of the year for Walsh.

State added another run in the fifth on a triple by Brad Piercy and a single by Todd DeMakes. The inning knocked Mottl from the hill. Clemson’s ace starter who entered the game with an 8-1 record, gave up nine hits and eight earned runs in his four innings. Earlier this week he was named one of 12 semifinalist for the Smith Award, which is given annually to the nation’s top college player.

The Pack made it a 10-5 game with two more runs in the seventh. Todd DeMakes had the key hit with a two-run double.

Clemson tied the game with its second five-run inning of the game with a five-spot in the bottom of the seventh. Brian Ellis started the inning with a walk, the 10th consecutive plate appearance that he reached base over three games. Patrick Boyd then singled and Matt Padgett reached on an error.

After Jason Harris grounded out, Kurt Bultmann and Henri Stanley walked with the bases loaded to bring Clemson within 10-7. After Peter Nystrom popped out, Singleton delivered on a 3-2 pitch with two out as he laced a double to the opposite field to score all three runs. The clutch hit tied the game at 10-10 and it came at 10 minutes to 10 on everyone’s watch. It was Singleton’s first double of the season.

While the game was tied at 10-10 after seven innings, there was no scoring until the Tigers tallied in the bottom of the 12th. The Pack had just two hits over the last five innings, while Clemson also had just two hits in that time frame. However, Clemson scored the game winner in the 12th.

Ellis led off the inning with a walk. He moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Patrick Boyd. Matt Padgett was intentionally walked and Jason Harris walked conventionally. That brought up Bultmann with the bases loaded and the junior second baseman delivered with the game winner.